Early mornings, long days and abandoning your car

I’ve been up since 5AM because Emily got called out. At around 5.30 this morning I was outside scooping snow of her car and warming it up. After you’ve been outside at that time in such cold temperatures you tend to wake up, so when Emily went off to work I couldn’t get back to sleep. Bugger.

But worse was yet to come when yet more snow fell this afternoon. It was bad enough for Emily – her flight was late because Birmingham airport had to close and she ended up landing about 5 hours later than she should have. As for me, well.. I have no car. Well, I say that – I’ve had to abandon it. The trouble with the Lexus is that it’s rear wheel drive and, generally, there’s no weight at all at the rear of the car. End result? Absolutely no grip or traction in snow.

Imagine you’re at the supermarket and your doing that trolley collecting job in the car park. Driving that car in the snow is like pushing a whole load of trolleys in a line – all the power is at the back and the front simply goes all over the place.

I managed to get home, although it was embarrassingly slow progress. I was being overtaken by smaller cars as I struggled to get around round-abouts and up small hills. Two and a half hours into my 40 minute journey I finally arrived at the chip shop to get us some sort of dinner.

But then it all went wrong. I managed to slide off the chip shop car park with a combination of skidding, sliding and hand braking. All I needed to do was go up the hill and home… …ah…

It didn’t work. I slid up the main road with the front-end of the car pointing in various different directions. Then it slowed down.. I was in third and trying not to over-rev it … but no.. it skidded and the wheels started spinning. I tried and tried and tried but in the end I had to give up. I turned around, went down the road and tried another way, but of course that involved a hill too.. Skid, skid, bounce off kerb, skid… All whilst friendly locals drove and walked past, completely ignoring my struggle. They laughed as I pirouetted like a drunken ice dancer across the snow. Thanks guys, thanks.

In fact, here’s a clip from our local news where a guy is having exactly the same problem…

There was one more chance… well, I’m talking rubbish there – there was another way which may have worked, but I was now at the bottom of two small slopes and had to try this last road…

I was doing well – I’d got a good run-up, I wasn’t wheel-spinning and things were looking good, but then – just as I reached the top… it skidded, and I turned, bounced off the kerb and ended up completely sideways in the road.


So I gave up. I dumped it. Well, it wasn’t really “dumped”, more like “parked badly in front of someones house”. I can’t wait for someone to see the tracks in the snow – it looks like a 3-year-old’s painting.

I grabbed the chips, my laptop and my keys and plodded through the snow back home. It was actually quite nice. I took a short-cut across a field